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Full text of "RAMROD-XL"

RAMROD XL FEATURES 



OSNXL OPERATING SYSTEM 

GRAPHICS MODES 

Same as 800XL. (0-15) 

CASSETTE INTERFACE 

On power up the cassette baud rate is set to $5CC (751=5, 750=204). 
On ALL cassette handler calls the baud rate used is what is in these 
locations. 

By changing locations 750 & 751 (dec.) you can set the cassette baud rate to 
any desired rate wanted (see note). 

EXAMPLE: POKE 751,2 from basic sets the baud rate to 1250. 
POKE 751 ,4:POKE750,0 sets the rate to that used in OSN V4. 

NOTE: We recommend only changing location 751. This will be easier to 
remember. A 2 in this location will give you a baud rate of about 1250. Even 
though the OS will support baud rates far above this, your cassette will 
not. The maximum we could get out of a standard cassette was 1525, and this 
will very from one unit to the next. SYSTEM RESET will reset the baud rate 
to default. 

KEYBOARD 

The keyboard response has been doubled in speed, allowing faster cursor 
control and typeing. 

COMPATABILITY 

OSNXL meets all operating system entry requirements, and as many OS 
subroutines as possible were kept with the same entry points as the Atari 
400/800. All handler entry points are the same as the Atari 400/800 'B' OS. 
This allows corapatability with almost all existing software for the 400/800. 

FLOATING POINT ROUTINES 

The RAMROD XL has included the FASTCHIP XL floating point routines in 
rom. This should give you about 4 times the speed of the original. 

OMNIMONXL 

A resident monitor with all the debugging tools needed for any 
application. See OMNIMONXL manual for further information. 

OTHER OPERATING SYSTEMS 

The RAMROD XL allows three complete operating systems on the board at 
the same time. A three position toggle switch is provided to bank within 
this 48K rom memory in 16K banks. It can use 27128 16K eproms, or the Atari 
OS rom. In addition, a 16 pin pad (wired with +-5V, TTL compatible) is 
provided for those special applications you may have. 

OMNIVEIWXL, an 80 column operating system is available for use in the RAMROD 
XL. (Requires video monitor for best performance) 



Newell Industries. ftiTii iijifefrry 78. Wylie TX 75098. 214/ 442-6612 



NEWELL INDUSTRIES 

P.O. BOX 253 
WYLIE, TEXAS 75098 



RAMROD-XL Installation Instructions 



Tools Required : Crosspoint screwdriver, flat blade screwdriver, pliers, drill 



1) Turn the computer upside down and remove the six crosspoint Screws holding the case together. 

2) Turn the computer upright and lift the top half of the case from the left, pivoting on the right 
edge, and lay it upside down to the right pf the bottom half as shown below. You will need to 
pull off the spadelug connector C from B. but leave the keyboard cable connected for now. 

| | I — 'r 




3) Now we wish to gain access to the area underneath the metal shield. If your computer has a 
■ingle screw (A) and tabs around the edge (1-9) holding the shield down, go to 3A. If there are 
screws (with nuts) holding the shield down, go to 3B. 

3A) Simply remove the screw and straighten the tabs so that you can lift the shield from the 
front, pivoting about 30 degrees on the remaining two screws at the back. This will bend 
the two metal tabs at the back slightly but this is of little consequence (see diagram 
below). Co to step 4. 

U U LJi i I I wr- i i i i i Iai r— 1 — I 



I 



CD 



TTB - 




3B) You will need to remove the motherboard from the bottom half ol the case. In this cue you 
will probably want to disconnect the keyboard cable by gently pulling it out of the 
connector oo the motherboard. Remove the remaining screws holding the motherboard to 
the case (near I. near 8 and between the joystick ports) and remove it by lifting from the 
left side and prying the cue around the joystick ports on the right. It is a tight fit but it 
should pop out. Once the motherboard is free, you can remove the nuts and screws holding 
the shield to the motherboard. It is recommended that you leave the two at the back on 
either side of the expansion port. In this way you can lift the shield from the front to 
shout a 30 degree angle, bending the back tabs slightly (see the diagram above). 
4) Now you will need to modify the shield slightly. Refer to the diagram at the top of the next page 
while doing these modifications. First., use broad pliers (not needle noee) to bend the flap at 
the front of the cartridge slot up flat against the underside of the shield. This flap will 
otherwise interfere with the RAMROD- XL. Next, bend out the right side toward the back to 
create a 1/4 inch gap. You can do this easily with your fingers. 



BASIC 




XL -OS 



N Br nci Shield-^" 





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[ BASIC 








- XL-OS 







5) Now you are ready to iotUll Lbe RAMROD-XL. Refer to the diagram above. First locate the XL-OS 
chip, a 28 pin chip about 2 inches to the right of the cartridge slot. Remove it by inserting the 
flat screwdriver between the chip and Lbe socket and gently prying and rotating the 
screwdriver. 

6) Insert the XL-OS chip you just removed into the RAMROD-XL board in the indicated socket. 
Male carafe 1 Mia el the •rieataliea el the chip. eUaerviee yee saay here it eel 

7) If you purchased OMNIVIEW also, plug it into the indicated socket if it is not already there. 

8} Plug the RAMROD-XL into the empty OS socket as indicated in the diagram above. Route the 
cable through the gap in the corner of Lbe shield. 

9) If you wish, you can do a preliminary Lest by applying power to the motherboard. With the 
RAMROD-XL switch in the center position, the screen should come up with the READY prompt 
of BASIC. If this does not work, check to see that the RAMROD-XL board is sealed well in the 
socket on the OS board. 

10) Reinstall the shield by securing it to the motherboard with the metal tabs and/or screws. 

1 1) If you had to remove the motherboard from the bottom of the case, pop it back into place and 
secure it with the screws. Likewise, carefully insert the keyboard cable back into the 
connector on the motherboard by using both hands to gently push it in. 

12) You will probably want to mount the switch in the back righthand corner of the case just to the 
right of the peripheral connector. Drill an appropriate site bole and mount the switch. 

1 3) Complete the installation by resecuring the top of the case with the six screws. 



Testing the RAMROD-XL 

1) Power up the computer with the RAMROD-XL switch in Lbe center position. If you do not get a 
READY prompt then go back and check Lbe installation. Otherwise, hold down SELECT and press 
RESET. This should Lake you into OMNIMONXL indicating lbe OSNXL/OMN1MONXL is active. 

2) Flip the toggle twitch to another position and press RESET. If you get a READY prompt, type 
'B. (RETURN)'. This should lake you into the diagnostic routines of OSXL. Otherwise, this 
position should yield a blank screen (If that socket is blank) or lbe memo pad (if that socket 
has OSNXL/OMNIV1EW). 

3) Once you have determined which switch position corresponds to which OS. you might want to 
label these positions next to the switch. 



For the operation of OMNIMONXL and 0MNIV1EV7XL. refer to their user's manuals. It should be 
noted that all three sockets of RAMROD-XL are identical, so that any OS could go in any socket. 
Also, there are pads for a 16 pin IC for you hackers to do with what you want. If you have any 
questions or encounter problems during the installation, call Newell Industries at 214 442-6612 
(no collect calls accepted) and we will be glad to assist you. 



INSTALLATION INSTRUCTIONS 
RAMROD XL- IN T 30XE 



Remove the tour screws tram the bottom of the computer. Tarn the 
comouter upright and lift the top caver off. Lift the keyboard up slowlv and 
unplug from the motherboard. Remove the RF shield top half. This mav have 
tabs or screws. Remove the screws securing the motherboard to the bottom 
case and lift the motherboard out of the case. Locate the 28 pin operating 
system chip (there is only one 28 pin chip) close to the center of the 
motherboard. Unsolder and remove this chip using caution not to damage 
it. (This should be done by someone that has soldering experience) Install 
the RAMROD XL board into the now empty 28 pin pad on the motherboard and 
solder. You may want to trim the excess socket pins off of the bottom of the 
RAMROD XL board. DO NOT trim the header leads. The RAMROD XL board should be 
installed so that the reverse 'L' is facing the rear of the computer. If 
desired, install the XE OS chip in one of the sockets of the RAMROD XL 
board. The notch in the chip should face the left side of the computer. The 
RAMROD XL board should fit as far into the motherboard as possible to allow 
clearance for the RF shield. If tne 40 Din IC beside the OS is in a socket, 
then vou must remove this socket and solder this IC di recti v to the 
motherboard for the Ramrod XL to have clearance to mount directiv to the 
motherboard. You may use a socket to install The Ramrod XL, but the 
clearance between the top of the Ramrod XL and the RF sheild will be 
critical and we do not recomend this method. 

Before reinstalling the motherboard, using a suitable tool, cut or break 
off the plastic post that would protrude through the motherboard and hit the 
RAMROD XL. Although this looks to be a support for the keyboard. you will 
notice that it does not support anything. Determine where to mount the 
switch and drill a suitable hale for it. Make sure that the cable will reach 
the location you have choosen once the RF sheild is in place. Assemble the 
computer and test. 



COMPATABILITY PATCHES FOR OSN 



Although OSN meets all OS entry requirments , there is at least one 
product that will not run with our OS. (There are a LOT more that won't run 
on the new computers). Believe it or not it is the old disk version of the 
Atari Word Processor. The reason for this is their use of two four byte 
tables in the OS. They broke their own rule in this case. If you use this 
product, we will give you the means to patch it so it will run with OSN and 
probably the new computers. This involves installing the tables in their 
code, and then changing their calls to the new loacations within the code. 

There is a message in the code that says "Insufficient Ram, 48K Minimum 
Required". We will replace the word 'Required' with the two 4 byte tables 
that we need ( ATAINT, INTATA) , and then change the refferences to point to 
our tables. 

First, using OMNIMON! we must locate this address in memory. Boot the 
software and then enter Omnimon. Then search memory for "Required". Make a 
note of the address of the first 'e'. This will be where we will put the 
tables. Now that we know where to put them we can continue with our patch. 

Using Omnimon, read the first 128 sectors of the disk into memory (R1 
700 80). Search memory in char, mode for ' Required' (note the space). Once 
found, go to hex mode and replace it with 9B 9B 40 00 20 60 20 40 00 60. The 
9B ' s at the start are for the end of message. Now in hex mode, search for 
refferences to FEF6 (S700 F6 FE) and FEFA (S700 FA FE). When located, 
replace these addresses with the new table addresses that you have made. The 
first table starts where you made note of the 'e'. For the second, just add 
4 (in hex). Remember that all addresses refered to are in low, high 
order . (ei . 192A would be installed as 2A 19). 

Now all that is left to do is to write the sectors back to disk (W1 700 
80). If all is done properly you will have a program that will run under all 
operating systems to date. 

Several popular programs by Synapse have also used illegal points in the 
operating system. Of the ones we have encountered, most problems are 
keyboard repeat key functions. Rumor has it that Synapse will correct this 
problem if they recieve enough complaints. For the time being, try searching 
the disk for the assemlbly code LDA $022B, CMP #$19. When found, change the 
$19 to $05. This will slow down the keyboard so you can use the program with 
OSN. Synfile by Synapse also does a LDA $FCD8, CMP #$A2 to determine if you 
are using an XL machine. To run on OSN change the $A2 to $A5, or replace 
their code with LDA $F11B, CMP #$78 to run on OSN and the standard OS. 

If you encounter a problem with some software that does not work with 
OSN, contact the software company that produced it. They have the source 
code, and should be able to help you. As stated earlier, OSN meets ALL 
operating systems rules. If you cannot get the software company to help you, 
we will try to locate the problem. Although without the source code, we 
cannot promise to find the problem. 

Most illegal calls to the OS are done with a JSR or JMP instruction 
( JSR=$20, JMP=$4C) , although any reference to $E500-$FFFF are illegal. If you 
have a program that doesn't run, searching for illegal calls may locate the 
problem. A popular autorun program uses a JSR to the OS (3 bytes) to INC 
$09, RTS, also 3 bytes (makes a lot of sense doesn't it). If you have an XL 
and wonder why your autorun program doesn't work, guess what? Yes, replace 
the JSR with the proper code and it will work. 



RAMROD 



Xl_ 



UPDATES 



SOCKETS: 

With the lowering of price of the 800 XL computers, it has been brought to cur 
attention that some of the recently manufactured computers do not have sockets for 
some or all of the IC's. The chips are soldered directly to the board. If this is the 
case with your computer, you will have to remove the operating system (OS) chip to 
install the Ramrod XL. This should be done using a heat sink on the IC. and a solder 
sucker to remove the solder. After removal of the OS IC, you may either install a 
socket in which to install the Ramrod XL, or solder the Ramrod XL directly to the 
board. You will have better reliability soldering the Ramrod XL directly to the board, 
but you loose the flexability of being able to remove it easily. In either case, this 
should be accomplished by someone with good soldering experience. 

You may want to back up your XL OS. Contact Newell Industries for a Backup cooy, 
or use the information below to make your own backup. 



THE XL OPERATING SYSTEM; 



The XL OS chip contains IbK of read only memory (ROM), addressed in the rem from 
0000-3FFF (he*). The OS is located as follows. 



ROM ADDRESS 

0000-OFFF 

1000-17FF 

1B00-1FFF 

2000-3FFF 



COMPUTER ADDRESS 

C000-CFFF 

5000-57FF 

D800-DFFF 

E000-FFFF 



FUNCTION 
OS 

Diagnostic (see note) 
Floating Point Routines 
OS 



THE OSNXL OPERATING SYSTEM; 



ROM ADDRESS 

0000-OFFF 

1000-17FF 

1800-1FFF 

2000-3FFF 



COMPUTER ADDRESS 

C000-CFFF 

5000-57FF 

D800-DFFF 

E000-FFFF 



FUNCTION 
Omn 1 man 

Omnimon (see note) 

Fastchip Floating Point Routines 

OS 



NOTE: This portion of the rom is only visible to the computer when bit 7 of address 
*D301 is 0. When this occures, this portion of the OS rom is mapped over the ram at 
location $5000.